By I-Juliana Christy

Robert F Christy was once a mythical physicist, one of many key avid gamers in probably the most dramatic occasions of the 20 th century. He used to be a scholar of Oppenheimer, who referred to as him the best on the earth. He was once a vital member of Fermi's workforce after they first unleashed the unheard-of energies of nuclear strength, developing the world's first nuclear reactor on December 2, 1942. at the ny venture he used to be the foremost physicist within the profitable attempt of the world's first atomic bomb, the Christy equipment, at Alamogordo on July sixteen, 1945. shortly he grew to become his abilities to selling the peaceable makes use of of atomic strength. He effectively adversarial atmospheric checking out of atomic bombs and fought nuclear proliferation, a crusade that at last resulted in the SALT talks with the Soviet Union. His favourite topic used to be astrophysics the place he made primary contributions to the certainty of Cepheids, variable stars which are an important distance symptoms within the universe.

Robert used to be both interesting as a guy. In his mid-50's he grew to become irresistably drawn to an astrophysicist, yet they have been a continent and a new release aside. close to his 60's they begun a cheerful and pleasant existence jointly. He remained full of life either mentally and bodily into his 90's: he used to be nonetheless galloping his horse at age ninety three.

Robert's tale is one in all overcoming stumbling blocks, of wish, and of achievement.

Readership: For lecturers in addition to most people.

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Additional resources for Achieving the Rare: Robert F Christy's Journey in Physics and Beyond

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In some theoretical schools essentially pure theory was pursued without much interest in how it connected with experiment. IJC: How many interactions did you have with Oppenheimer? That is, how did he influence you? You mentioned these lively discussions Monday evenings, you mentioned theoretical seminars, you mentioned that he probably gave you a Chapter 3. Exciting Graduate Years with Oppenheimer 31 choice of thesis subjects, you mentioned this challenging course at the beginning. Is there anything else?

Peter decided on Harvard. He did not get in initially, but due to his computer stunt he got in the second time he applied. Peter had made a computer out of relays, and Harvard was so surprised that he was admitted. As a family we had three Volkswagens. As their mother did not drive there were three Bugs for me and the boys. The one I shipped from Brussels was mine. I did not encourage motorcycle driving. One time we went to Philadelphia, to see the Liberty Bell. After Princeton, we came back to Pasadena.

The Sierras, the Rockies, the Alps — I have visited them all and climbed in all of them. I plan to do more. Moving On from UBC Robert’s friend George Volkoff applied for graduate work with Oppenheimer and was accepted after completing his Master’s degree at UBC. The following year Robert (who was a year behind George) also obtained his Master’s degree, applied for graduate work with Oppenheimer, and was likewise accepted. As Robert put it, “George was accepted, and I guess he did well enough there that when I applied the following year, from the same institution and with a comparable record, I was accepted.

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